Professional Footballers Australia (PFA) has today paid tribute to Frank Lowy’s role in making football a truly professional game in Australia.

With the Football Federation Australia Chairman to step down tomorrow, PFA Chief Executive Adam Vivian said that Mr Lowy’s list of achievements is long and significant and he has made a real difference to footballers’ lives.

“Mr Lowy’s love of football and outstanding business acumen has benefited all Australian footballers,” Vivian said. “No one forgets this. There’s a lot of people who have a lot to thank him for.

“We have come along way. Games are regularly televised. Facilities, coaching methods, player welfare and wellbeing are all significantly greater than just a decade ago.

“There are more footballers playing in the national league, our national team is now afforded a high performance work place and our women are making progress to becoming full-time professionals.

“Australians have regularly played across Europe, but our entry into Asia has provided even greater opportunities for players, with many PFA members now plying their trade in Asia. The Socceroos and Matildas have both been crowned as the Champions of Asia, giving the country its first major silverware.

“The platform we stand upon today is unimaginable from a decade ago, and provides a solid foundation for which to increase the professionalisation of the game in Australia.

“Many have spoken about Frank Lowy’s contribution to making football in Australia genuinely competitive with all other sports in the world’s most competitive market. Many have talked about his foresight, tenacity and acumen in playing a key role in the establishment of a viable national league, which has the potential to continue to grow. It is loved by fans and has become a regular fixture on our sporting landscape.

“But players recognise the benefits in their own lives. And the next generation has more reason and incentive to be footballers in Australia. There’s more to do, and we will work to build on Mr Lowy’s legacy and take the game forward just as much over the next ten years.”